Living a life free of abuse and fear is a fundamental human right. Abuse robs women of their self esteem, affects the development of their children and creates a cycle that can be carried on for generations. Domestic and family violence costs Canadians billions of dollars annually.
Family violence/abuse takes on many forms and is commonly referred to as domestic violence, spousal abuse, or child abuse.
Domestic abuse can occur in all intimate relationships whether a couple is married or cohabiting, same-sex or dating. It also occurs in parent child relationships, extended family-child relationships, and sibling relationships.
Are you experiencing abuse?
Abuse takes many forms. Does any of this seem familiar?
Physical abuse: Slapping, choking, or punching, with hands or objects used as weapons. Being threatened with a knife or gun.
Sexual abuse: Using threats, intimidation, or physical force to coerce engagement in unwanted sexual acts.
Emotional or verbal abuse: Threats of physical harm or death. Threats of suicide. Humiliating or degrading comments. Forced commitment of degrading acts. Isolation from family or friends, or confinement to the house. Destruction of possessions, or any other actions intended to restrict freedom and independence.
Financial abuse: Theft or control of money or valuables. Denial of the right to work.
Spiritual abuse: Use of religious or spiritual beliefs to manipulate, dominate, and control.
Criminal harassment/stalking: Following or watching in a persistent, malicious, and unwanted manner. Invasion of privacy in a way that threatens personal safety.